“Compelling content.” “Written with the search engines in mind.” “Google loves quality content.” These phrases are bandied around by all and sundry when it comes to the qualities of content writing, and such well-meaning but often-oblique instructions can actually serve to confuse many new writers. What you really need is something altogether simpler. A single instruction, one thing to keep in mind that will ensure your writing comes out well every time. And I think I have just the thing: “Value.” The Imaginary Google ‘Value’ Search Filter What if there was a little box that you could tick when making a search in Google which said: ‘Click here to show only pages which actually provide value to the reader.’ How many people would click it? Somehow I don’t think I would be the only one. Just think how much that would shake up the SEO industry! Suddenly everyone would be talking about the value of good writing rather than links, keywords, density, or whatever else is the flavor of the month as dictated by Google’s latest algorithm shake up. But even without the magic ‘value’ filter, the fact is that if you focus on providing value in every piece of content that you produce, you’ll not only write better content, but you also write better SEO content. I’m no SEO expert, but I do know that Google is always trying to provide the most relevant content to its users, and no matter what changes it decides to make in the future, you never need to be one algorithm adjustment from catastrophe if you focus on content that provides genuine value.